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Geobreeders #2: They Work Hard for Their Money
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Written by maehara   
Wednesday, 23 June 2004 00:00
Geobreeders - Volume 2More adventures from the Kagura mob - this time veering away from any semblance of a story & rushing headlong into the arms of all-out action...

1 - Beginners
Irie offers Taba a job with Hound, if he decides to leave Kagura, which gives him something to think about - he has been wanting to get away from Kagura for a while. His moping over the possibilities is interrupted by another contract, though - this time, a building site with more than its fair share of pussycats...

2 - Night Moves
Onsen! Although sadly edited - those who like their nipples will want to bear this in mind. Some of the Kagura staff are beginning to wonder about their company - like where the sealing software comes from, for a start - and the questions are unnerving Yuka. Some secrets behind the founding of the company, perhaps? Taba, meanwhile, is getting more attached to the phantom cat who's been tailing him, and has even given her a name - Maya - although not so attached that he doesn't try and get some information about Black Cat's grouping out of her. Meanwhile, a group opposed to Black Cat's plans decide to make an example out of him & attempt to kill him - Maya, following her orders, does her best to protect Taba, but the attempt leaves him without a home...

3 - The Great Battle at Ayagane Harbour
It on with the swimsuits as the Kagura team take on the Phantom Cats once more - this time in a running battle through the harbour. With Hound and Irie also involved, events soon get out of control - especially after the Cats seize control of a Navy cruiser. Destruction and mayhem ensue...

4 - The Battle at Ayagane City
The battle reaches shore & continues, with the Cats making good use of of a Prowler - an automated tank that's proving hard to avoid. Realizing it makes more sense to team up that work against each other, the Hound commander agrees to work with Kagura to round up the Cats (although Kagura have some issues with his demand that they wear uniforms...). Although it seems the whole incident may be a set-up by Black Cat...

Okay, so this volume maybe isn't lacking in any traces on an ongoing plot - Irie & Black Cat work on their respective sidelines at whatever schemes it is they have up their sleeves, but their plans only barely register through the issue, which unashamedly focusses on action & fanservice. Neither is a bad thing...! This issue is noticeable because of the editing of the onsen scenes - I'm told there are no such edits from Volume 3 onwards.

Past that, what's to write when 90% of the manga involves Kagura blowing things us - in their usual inept style. :) I love the art of this series, although the reproduction isn't that great (sadly something CPM haven't corrected in the new reprinting, apparently), and for sheer entertainment value it's hard to beat. Part of me wishes there was a bit more emphasis on the story that's locked inside & trying to get out, but that's really a minor criticism. Well worth buying.

It's worth pointing out that the reviewed version is now out-of-print. CPM are re-releasing Geobreeders in a new, smaller format (A5-sized, to match TOKYOPOP's Authentic Manga line, although CPM are keeping to their flipped / translated format). The new version of Volume 1 is out now, volume 2 is due on September 15, 2004.

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